Nigeria’s authorities denounced a Reuters report of a mass clandestine abortion scheme as a ‘physique of insults’ in opposition to Nigerians.
The Nigerian authorities has rejected a Reuters information company report printed final week a few secret programme of pressured abortions run by the navy within the nation’s northeast, Info Minister Lai Mohammed mentioned.
The Reuters investigation reported that since 2013, a secret navy programme has concerned terminating no less than 10,000 pregnancies amongst girls and ladies, a lot of whom had been kidnapped and raped by members of the Boko Haram group.
The sources included dozens of witness accounts and documentation reviewed by Reuters.
“The Federal Authorities hereby categorically states that there is no such thing as a ‘secret, systematic and unlawful abortion programme’ being run by our navy within the northeast or wherever throughout the nation,” Mohammed mentioned in opening remarks at a public occasion in Abuja on Monday.
“We additionally hereby reject the accusation of working an abortion programme levelled at our navy,” he mentioned.
Mohammed’s feedback had been the primary by a Nigerian authorities official for the reason that report was printed final week.
The navy has additionally denied finishing up abortions, and denounced the report as “a physique of insults on the Nigerian peoples and tradition”.
“Nigerian navy personnel have been raised, bred and additional skilled to guard lives,” it mentioned.
“[The] Nigerian navy is not going to, due to this fact, ponder such evil of working a scientific and unlawful abortion programme wherever and anytime, and certainly not on our personal soil.”
The report was based mostly on witness accounts from 33 girls and ladies, 5 well being staff and 9 safety personnel concerned within the alleged programme, and on navy paperwork and hospital data “describing or tallying 1000’s of abortion procedures”.
In accordance with Reuters, a lot of the abortions had been carried out with out the girl’s consent and a few had been performed with out their prior data, via abortion-inducing drugs or injections handed off as drugs to spice up well being or fight illness.
United Nations Secretary-Normal Antonio Guterres on Friday known as on Nigerian authorities to analyze the allegations, UN spokesman Stephane Dujarric mentioned.
Mohammed didn’t say whether or not there can be such an investigation by authorities.
Nigeria’s defence chief has mentioned the navy is not going to examine the Reuters report, saying it was not true.
US ‘troubled’ by killing of youngsters
Individually, the US Division of State says it’s “deeply troubled” by a Reuters report that the Nigerian military killed kids in its struggle in opposition to armed fighters.
Nigerian navy leaders instructed Reuters the military has by no means focused kids for killing. They mentioned the reporting within the article by Reuters is an insult to Nigerians and a part of a international effort to undermine the nation’s struggle in opposition to the fighters.
“We’re pursuing additional info, together with from the Authorities of Nigeria and stakeholders working on this house,” a US State Division spokesperson mentioned by e-mail.
“We’re nonetheless reviewing the report and can make choices about subsequent steps thereafter. Our Embassy in Abuja is searching for further info, together with by chatting with Nigerian authorities.”
The Reuters report mentioned intentional killings of youngsters have occurred throughout northeast Nigeria, the place the navy has been battling armed fighters for 13 years.